Business

BNC seek investors for smelter project

Business Reporter

BINDURA Nickel Corporation (BNC) says it is in the process of looking for investors to help complete refurbishment of its smelter project.

The smelter project is 83 percent complete but was put on ice owing to lack funding as the mine experienced cash flow constraints during the year under review.

Addressing delegates at the company’s analyst briefing managing director Batirai Manhando said nickel prices were also not high enough to make the project viable.

“The Project was put on hold pending the sourcing of further funding to complete it as well as monitoring Nickel price trends on the world market.

“Some major projects were either slowed down or put on hold due to cash flow constraints during the year. As reported before, the project progress is still at 83%,” he said.

Manhando added that “Nickel prices that obtained during the year under review were not high enough to make the project viable. Nevertheless, the Nickel price outlook for the coming financial year is promising”.

BNC also took the opportunity to inform analysts that it will continue with its current mining plan of blending of massive and disseminated ores which sustains the life of mine, a move which is expected to continue into the next financial year.

The mine will also consider continuous improvement initiatives and cost saving measures for it to remain a low cost producer.

BNC currently has over 400 000 tonnes of nickel in its reserves which are still to be milled with Trojan Mine sitting on 76 000 tonnes, Shangani Mine 65 000 tonnes, Hunters Road 200 000 tonnes and Damba Silwane exploration opportunity with 67 000 tonnes.

According to the mine tonnes milled decreased from 440.6 tonnes in 2017 to 390.2 tonnes, while Nickel sales tonnage also dropped from 6 705 million in 2017 to 6 470million in 2018.

BNC revenue increased by 19% to US$53.6 million up from US$45.1 million in 2017 and the increase is attributed to an increase in nickel price per ton in the last 5 months.

A high demand in nickel by-products were also recorded which contributed to revenue increase for the period under review.

Meanwhile, BNC chairman Muchadeyi Masunda announced that Alex Peter Danso has joined the BNC board of directors with effect from 30 November 2017.

Mr. Danso is a Ghanaian who is bringing in vast experience to the board. ENDS//

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